Jim Lowery pleads guilty to charges in Toombs County - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Jim Lowery pleads guilty to charges in Toombs County

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

Sheriff Ladson O'Connor died last summer while chasing a suspect. Thursday, that suspect pled guilty to some of the charges in that case.

Jim Lowery and his attorneys took a plea agreement in court Thursday in the case that sends him to prison on a 50-year sentence

The plea that Lowery entered only covers the Toombs County charges in this chase, which is not related to Sheriff O'Connor's death in Montgomery County.

In June 2015, he sped away from a deputy who tried to stop him on a traffic issue. Investigators say he shot at the deputy, a trooper, and others as the chase went through Toombs County and into Montgomery. Sherriff Ladson O'Connor also joined the chase and eventually wrecked, which cost him his life.

Middle Circuit District Attorney Hayward Altman said that getting this case over helps the murder case in Montgomery County move forward, while the charges in Toombs County could not have been ignored.

"We had an officer whose life was put in danger. I had an obligation to every officer in the country, but especially every officer in Georgia, to make sure he paid a price for that," said Hayward Altman, District Attorney.

Lowery said his only thought was to his escape because he feared for his life, as he spoke to the officers he fired at in the chase.

"I don't hold any grudges toward any of them," cried Jim Lowery, defendant.

Lowery briefly escaped from jail custody earlier this year while being held in Laurens County. This plea deal paves the way for him to go to prison while he still awaits trial in Montgomery County.

Prosecutors in Montgomery County expect the murder trial to begin in early 2017.

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